Great Land – Independence Special: Lame, yet we will miss | Review

Terrific Land closed its 21st season yesterday (Tuesday) with an Independence Day special marked “Starting over – Year Zero”. It was not an easy season for “Ertez Fahadal”, while the reporters of all channels mobilized to be national morale boosters and neglected their real role, Eretz was one of the few voices on the screen who dared to ask the hard questions.

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True, all of this, as usual, was wrapped in bread and entertainment, the sometimes tedious promotion of such and other talents of Keshet (the contract is binding), and yet it provided a few peaceful moments that revealed the darkness in which Israel is. The final program was not without sparkles, but it is hard to say that it had memorable moments.

So what does Israel look like after a necessary restart and restarting the system? More or less the same as now, the prime minister is still Netanyahu, of course, and he is lighting his torch in the flames that surrounded Kiryat Shmona this week, which burned following a barrage of rockets fired at the area. Beside him – Sarah, apparently, in a guest appearance by the model Bar Sommer, as a reference to the ridiculous processing that the editors of the magazine did to her picture from Seder night.

Sara Netanyahu is a young block in
Sara Netanyahu is a young block in “Wonderful Country” (Photo: Keshet 12 screenshot)

Later the ministers also arrived Itamar Ben Gvir (with a pita with a kebab on the head, according to the customs of the holiday) fYitzhak Goldknopf With the luxurious scarf. Two characters that appear in almost every show, and in my opinion, we have become a bit jaded. You can’t come to complaints about the great country that it recycles the main figures that dominate Israeli current events, but the punches about Ben Gabir as a string puller (“the head of the prime minister”) or the rich hedonistic Goldknopf – are a little less effective when they are played for the hundredth time.

Those who received the most criticism in the graduation program were the elements considered to be relatively sane in the Balhat government – the minister Benny Gantz and the Minister of Defense Yoav Galant. Eretz’ treatment of Gantz this season is an excellent example of how to do it right. The program’s criticism of Gantz, who remained in the government well beyond the emergency period that passed us by, has not changed; But the writers found a new way to present her every time.

Throughout the season, Gantz was often presented at Eisenkot’s side, who did not hesitate to say things as they were and more than once scolded the head of his party who once again stepped into Netanyahu’s “emergency” trap and provided him with a few more months of stability in power. This time, Eisenkot’s absence is noticeable, and symbolizes the gap between the two former chiefs of staff: one, unable to produce a meaningful statement, and the other, who has no time for all this bullshit.

Benny Gantz in the season finale special of
Benny Gantz in the season finale special of “Wonderful Country” (Photo: Keshet 12 screenshot)

Gantz, despite leading all mandate polls by a significant margin since the beginning of the war, is alone and admits that he has heard the criticism of his delay in leaving the government even long after the clouds of the emergency had dissipated some months ago. He enumerates the nicknames he has been given: “Beni Perair, Beni Tamim, Beni Hoshem”, and finally bursts out and screams: “Gadi, close the door, I can hear you talking, damn it”.

If there is no Sinwar – at least we found Nemo

None of the members of the government of horrors is particularly good at showing emotions that are not on the continuum between anger and rage, but the most prominent of all is Minister Gallant, whose papers look like an early version of an artificial intelligence product, one that barely passes the Turing test. This time, beyond the exact imitation of his reprimands of terrorists (which must make Nasrallah and Sinwar rattle in the bunker), he brags: “The Americans can keep the smart bombs for themselves, we have clever statements in the development of Rafael.”

And if we have already mentioned Nasrallah and Sinwar, the two were absent from this show, and it’s a good thing. In their place, Eretz brought the real enemy of the State of Israel – the Eurovision contestants who dared to protest Israel’s participation in the singing competition. The contestants from Greece, Ireland, Holland and of course the big winner from Switzerland are brought to the studio with flannel covering their eyes, and Gallant threatens to close accounts with them.

The image of Gallant barking orders at the colored contestants is so absurd it works. I could give Eretz credit for the subtext of the skit – how ridiculous that instead of settling accounts with those who perpetrated a horrific massacre on us, the Israelis entered the fray and chose an easier target such as students and queers who hold a negative opinion of Israel. But since the show devoted quite a bit of effort itself to mocking criticism of Israel, while mocking young people with colored hair who respect gender appeal, this is perhaps too subversive a reading of the content. In any case, if “the Mossad” failed to lay its long hand on Sinwar, we can take solace in the fact that at least we found Nemo.

Yoav Galant and the Eurovision 2024 contestants in
Yoav Galant and the Eurovision 2024 contestants in “Great Country” (Photo: Keshet 12 screenshot)

It was not an easy season for “Eretz Fahadal” even in normal days it has to find a way to pass a sharp criticism but not rock the ship too much, and risk being removed from the screen – as happened to much more biting satirists like Lior Shlain. Sometimes she fell for clichés, and punches repeated throughout the week on Twitter, and for too easy purposes. At times she was the brilliance, especially in the opening sketches that presented images from everyday life, and at other times she provided light entertainment that gave us a momentary reason to laugh, at a time when laughter had become such a rare commodity.

At a time when most journalists mobilized to tell the public what it wanted to hear, and became the IDF’s cheerleading squad, instead of telling the audience what it needed to know, “Wonderful Land” was almost the only place where we could hear the criticism: of those in power, of The IDF’s progress towards “absolute victory” and the general hype that has surrounded us in recent months. Her place in the weekly strip will probably be taken next week by a reality show, maybe another episode of Master Chef, and all we have to do is miss it – until next season.

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